- The Washington Times - Sunday, November 2, 2014

MINNEAPOLIS — DeSean Jackson had done it with Kirk Cousins and Colt McCoy as his quarterback. On Sunday, he also pulled in a reception for more than 40 yards with Robert Griffin III playing the position.

Jackson had four catches for 120 yards and a touchdown in the Washington Redskins’ 29-26 loss at Minnesota on Sunday, continuing to be the deep threat that the team sorely lacked when it added him as a free agent in the offseason.

The wide receiver caught a 45-yard pass in the first quarter, a 56-yard pass in the fourth quarter and also added a 13-yard touchdown reception in the third quarter.

Jackson has now had more than 100 receiving yards in five of the Redskins’ nine games this season, including nine receptions of more than 40 yards and five of more than 50 yards.

He could have potentially had one more: Jackson was Griffin’s intended target on the “Hail Mary” attempt as time expired, but the pass fell incomplete.

“I mean, honestly, it’s a heartbreaker situation,” Jackson said. “We definitely felt good about coming into this game and winning it, but regardless, the same as any given Sunday, you still have to prepare and play 60 minutes. It was just one of the things that we didn’t go wholehearted. It was definitely tough.”

SEE ALSO: Robert Griffin III returns to mixed results in Redskins’ loss to Vikings

Running game back on track in loss

Running back Alfred Morris ran for two touchdowns, marking the first time since Week 2 he’s had multiple rushing touchdowns in one game. The two touchdowns also pushed him past Earnest Byner and into seventh place for the most rushing touchdowns with the Redskins.

All told, the Redskins finished with 122 rushing yards, marking the first time they’ve rushed for more than 100 yards in three consecutive games since last season.

“We’re just taking it one game at a time, honestly, man,” Morris said. “Just trying to find ways to continue to get it going. We kind of got it going against Dallas [in the] second half and were able to get it going pretty much all-around this entire game. We’ve just got to find ways to build on top of that.”

Anti-nickname protest draws thousands

According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, a protest organized at TCF Bank Stadium against the Redskins’ nickname drew a police estimate of 3,200 people, with Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges at one point leading the crowd in a “change the name” chant.

SEE ALSO: Teddy Bridgewater rallies Vikings past Redskins in second half

Minneapolis has been the site of several anti-Redskins protests in recent years, including before the game last November at the now-demolished Metrodome. According to the newspaper, that rally only drew 700 protesters.

The University of Minnesota has objected to the use of the nickname and attempted to block it from being used in any fashion during the game, but lacked the legal authority to do so, the newspaper reported.

Replay remains a challenge for Gruden

Jay Gruden fell to 0-for-6 this season in challenges when officials ruled that cornerback David Amerson did not intercept a pass from Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater with 2:18 remaining in the second quarter.

Bridgewater’s pass, intended for wide receiver Cordarelle Patterson, overshot his target, and Amerson attempted to corral the pass and stay inbounds before he hit the ground.

Roberts makes impact in return game

Wide receiver Andre Roberts returned a kickoff 45 yards in the third quarter, marking his longest kickoff return of the season and the longest he’s had since a 47-yard return in 2010, his rookie season, when he played for Arizona.

That return set up a 7-play, 56-yard scoring drive for the Redskins, who took a 17-14 lead after a 13-yard touchdown reception by Jackson and an extra point from Kai Forbath.

Extra points

Tight end Logan Paulsen left the game, but returned, after experiencing plantar fasciitis in his left foot. Two other players left the game, but returned: free safety Ryan Clark, who has been battling sprains in both ankles, as well as a torn biceps, as well as inside linebacker Keenan Robinson, who injured one of his shoulders. … Outside linebacker Trent Murphy, the Redskins’ second-round draft pick in May, picked up his first sack when he dropped Bridgewater for a 9-yard loss with 3:31 remaining in the first quarter. … Strong safety Phillip Thomas, who was signed off the Redskins’ practice squad on Saturday, made his debut in the second half and was limited to special teams. In his second year, Thomas missed all of his rookie season because of a Lisfranc sprain in his left foot and had not played in a regular-season game until Sunday. Defensive end Clifton Geathers, who played in the first six games but was inactive for the last two, was waived on Saturday to make room for Thomas. … Cousins was inactive for the first time in his two-plus seasons with the Redskins. Also inactive on Sunday were running back Silas Redd, right tackle Tyler Polumbus, wide receiver Aldrick Robinson, right guard Spencer Long, outside linebacker Jackson Jeffcoat and cornerback Greg Ducre. … Fullback Darrel Young and defensive end Jason Hatcher participated in the coin toss and were the designated game captains. … The Redskins and Vikings played for the fifth consecutive season, and a sixth remains possible: Washington’s predetermined scheduling rotation has them playing on the road against the NFC North opponent with a similar finish in the standings next season.

• Zac Boyer can be reached at zboyer@washingtontimes.com.

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